The Mystery Science Theater 3000 Kickstarter campaign has reached its $2 million goal, and now creator Joel Hodgson has named the planned third host of the storied comedy franchise.
This comes at the same time that MST3K veterans Michael J. Nelson, Kevin Murphy and Bill Corbett gave a shout-out to Hodgson's campaign in their latest Rifftrax e-mail. Many fans had been concerned -- especially with word of a new host coming on board -- that some of the veteran MST3K talent might be excluded or alienated.
The new host, who hasn't officially come on board but who can be seen in a video below saying "sure" to the question of his hiring, will be Nerdist's Jonah Ray.
Ray, whose voice was recognizable to many fans in the first teaser for the campaign.
"I can't really tell you what kind of host Jonah is going to be, but I hope you'll give him a chance to show you," Hodgson wrote this morning. "And even if you're familiar with Jonah's career, remember: that doesn't mean he'll bring the same exact approach to MST3K. I think a lot of you may be surprised. Plus, like the previous members of our cast, I think Jonah has great instincts and a lot of range. He's funny, he's wicked smart, and like I said, his heart's in the right place. He loves MST3K, he seems to understand what makes it so special, and most important, I know he takes the role seriously.
"At the end of the day, he's just another regular guy in a yellow jumpsuit – not so different from you and me. I'm excited to see what he can bring to the next hundred episodes of Mystery Science Theater, until it's time to hand the jumpsuit over to someone else."
It also appears, at least based on the image at top, that the new mad scientist who will be Ray's adversary will be young and female -- or at least a skinny male with long hair.
So far, the Kickstarter campaign has committed to at least three episodes. Depending on how much more money the campaign raises, they may make as many as 12 episodes with Ray in the jumpsuit.